Shihan Rico Acosta founded Kuntaw Kali Kruzada in 1993. He has studied the martial arts continually since the age of five and has been teaching for more than 30 years. He trained in the Philippines with some of the most notable Grandmasters, including Grandmaster Benjamin Luna Lema, Grandmaster Jose Mena, Nuno Mataw Guro ESGM Vicente Sanchez, Grandmaster Ric Esteban, Grandmaster Samuel Bambit Dulay, Grandmaster Roberto Presas, Grandmaster Charlie Villanueva, Grandmaster Florendo Picate, Grandmaster Jesus Pallorina, and Senior Master Frank Sobrino.
He is a recognized master of several styles of Filipino Martial Arts, promoted to the rank of 10th degree Black Belt in Kali Arnis International Federation awarded in 2004 by Nuno Mataw Guro ESGM Vicente Sanchez. In the year 2000 he received an award for "Best Maestro/Guro" from PIGSSAI in Manila. In 2001 he produced a Lightning Scientific Arnis video with Paladin Press. He was appointed as the IMAFP coordinator for New York in 2005. Shihan Rico was one of the featured instructors at the 3rd FMA Festival and the 2006 Remy Presas Memorial Camp in the Philippines. He was inducted into the UFoMA Hall of Fame and recognized as Mataw Guro in 2010. He was recently promoted to 6th Degree Master in Modern Arnis by the Philippine Council of Grandmasters, and on December 2015 Nuno Mataw Guro ESGM Vicente Sanchez gave him a certificate of recognition promoting him to Grandmaster - 10th Degree Black Belt w/t Gold trim in Lightning Scientific Arnis.